The iPhone 8 could be the most exciting smartphone of the year and it’s just around the corner, with Apple set to announce the new handset on Tuesday September 12.
But as the iPhone 8 has already been heavily leaked we’re not expecting many surprises, so we already have a fairly good idea of the likely specs, design and features of the phone.
With that in mind we can already take a good guess at how it’s likely to compare to 2017’s other massive hit – the Samsung Galaxy S8. So, based on leaks and rumors this is how we think Apple’s next flagship will stand up to the S8, at least on paper.
iPhone 8 vs Samsung Galaxy S8 design
If rumors are right the iPhone 8 will have more visually in common with the Samsung Galaxy S8 than any previous iPhone.
It’s expected to have a glass back, a metal frame and an all-screen front. And when we say all-screen, we mean it. Images suggest the only real bezel will be a small notch at the top housing the front-facing camera and sensors.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 also has a glass back and a metal frame, and it too has a screen-filled front, though not quite to the same extent, as there are narrow strips of bezel above and below the screen. It also has a curved display, while the iPhone 8 is largely expected to retain a flat screen.
We’re not totally confident of the iPhone 8’s dimensions just yet, but one rumor puts it at 143.59 x 70.94 x 7.57mm, which would make it shorter, slightly wider and a tiny bit slimmer than the 148.9 x 68.1 x 8mm Samsung Galaxy S8.
One other likely similarity between the two phones is their water and dust resistance. The Samsung Galaxy S8 is IP68 certified, which means it can be submerged up to 1.5 meters deep for up to 30 minutes.
That’s deeper than the IP67 certified iPhone 7 can manage, but it’s rumored that the iPhone 8 will match the Galaxy S8 with IP68 certification.
The two phones are likely to be available in different colors though. There are rumors that the iPhone 8 could come in a ‘blush gold’ color or even have a mirrored finish, while most of the iPhone 7 colors will probably remain too, including jet black, gold, silver and black.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 meanwhile is available in Midnight Black, Orchid Gray, Arctic Silver, Coral Blue and Maple Gold, though not all shades are available everywhere.
Last but not least, their fingerprint scanners will likely be in different positions – if the iPhone 8 has one at all. On the Galaxy S8 the scanner has been moved to the back, to make room for the almost bezel-free screen.
There was a lot of talk that Apple was trying to embed its scanner into the screen, but recent rumors suggest it hasn’t managed to do this, which means the scanner may either be on the back or the power button.
Or it might be ditched altogether in favor of the new facial recognition tech that’s rumored for the iPhone 8.
iPhone 8 vs Samsung Galaxy S8 display
As mentioned above, the iPhone 8 is expected to have a front-filling screen with almost no bezel, but it’s likely to remain flat, rather than joining the curved bandwagon.
The iPhone 8’s display is rumored to be 5.8 inches and to use AMOLED, rather than LCD. Advantages of using the former include better contrast and more vibrant colors.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 also has a 5.8-inch AMOLED display and it also takes up most of the front of the phone, but it’s curved at both edges.
The curves both look good and allow you to swipe across the curved edge to display shortcuts to apps, contacts and features. While the iPhone 8 probably won’t have that feature, it may have a function area at the bottom of the display, which could be used to quickly access apps and may also support gesture controls in place of a physical home button.
The iPhone 8 will also likely retain 3D Touch – its pressure-sensitive display technology which allows apps to do different things depending on whether you give them a light tap or a stronger push.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 meanwhile supports HDR content, though the iPhone 8 may well too, especially as the iPad Pro 10.5 does.
One thing we’re far less sure of is what resolution the iPhone 8’s screen will be. One rumor puts it at 1,125 x 2,436, which would make it lower resolution than the 1,440 x 2,960 Galaxy S8.
Finally, Samsung’s screen may be a little longer and thinner than Apple’s (a theory backed up by the leaked dimensions above), with the Galaxy S8 offering a new 18.5:9 aspect ratio.
Early reports suggested the iPhone 8 wouldpossibly stick with the more standard 16:9, but latter leaks seem to peg it at this new, longer 18:9 ratio too – something that makes sense given Samsung is said to be making the iPhone 8 screens too.
OS and power
The iPhone 8 is likely to be powered by a tiny 10nm A11 or A11 Fusion chipset. That small size will likely help make it faster and more efficient than the previous generation of chip, and it’s likely to be a quad-core one, coupled with 3GB of RAM.
On paper, the Samsung Galaxy S8 sounds rather more impressive, with its octa-core chipset (either a Snapdragon 835 or Exynos 8895 depending on whether you’re in the US or elsewhere) and 4GB of RAM.
But as Apple has proven year after year that headline specs aren’t everything, so we’d expect the iPhone 8 to be one of the most powerful phones of the year (alongside the Samsung Galaxy S8).
Apple is also rumored to be working on an artificial intelligence processor which could take some of the load off the main chip, boosting performance.
Apple is set to pack plenty of storage space into the iPhone 8 too, with rumors of 64GB being the smallest size and the company also offering a 256GB model, as well as possibly a 512GB one.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 meanwhile comes in just a 64GB size, but it does have a microSD card slot, and there’s no chance the iPhone 8 will have a similar ability, with Apple preferring to optimise the storage inside to keep performance whizzing along.
The biggest difference between the two phones though is likely to be their operating systems. This is an obvious one, but the iPhone 8 is sure to run iOS 11, while the Samsung Galaxy S8 runs Android Nougat, with an upgrade to Oreo coming in the near future.
iPhone 8 vs Samsung Galaxy S8 camera and battery
We’re expecting the iPhone 8 to have a dual-lens camera, just like the iPhone 7 Plus, and like that phone it will probably be a 12MP one, capable of 2x optical zoom and blurring the background of shots for a bokeh effect.
But it’s rumored to have optical image stabilization on both lenses, where the 7 Plus has it on just one, and to have augmented reality (AR) features.
These could include the ability to recognize and manipulate faces, guide you to very specific indoor locations, such as a product in a store or your seats in a stadium, and add 3D effects to images.
It may also have a ‘SmartCam’ feature, which could automatically recognize scenes and objects and adjust the camera settings to the optimal ones for shooting them.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 has just a single-lens 12MP snapper, but it’s a quality one, with a large lens opening to let in lots of light, optical image stabilization, and, importantly, the ability to take very high-quality photos.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 also has an 8MP front-facing camera. We don’t know the specs of the iPhone 8’s yet, but it could well be a 7MP one like on the iPhone 7, though may also benefit from AR features. It might also be able to do a 3D scan of your face to unlock your phone.
The Galaxy S8 also has face scanning tech (along with an iris scanner), but the former is less advanced than Apple’s is rumored to be, as it can be fooled by a 2D image of your face.
We don’t know how big the iPhone 8’s battery will be, though it’s tipped to be larger than past iPhone batteries such as the 2,900mAh power pack in the iPhone 7 Plus.
It’s also heavily rumored to support wireless charging, which would be a first for an Apple phone.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 meanwhile has a 3,000mAh battery, and supports both wireless charging and fast charging. It’s not the longest-lasting phone we’ve come across, but it will easily see most through a day between charges.
iPhone 8 vs Samsung Galaxy S8 price
Rumors suggest the iPhone 8 could start at up to $1,100 (around £845/AU$1,380), though we wouldn’t be surprised if it’s a little bit less for the smallest capacity model. In any case, it’s sure to cost a lot.
The Samsung Galaxy S8 is pricey too, but not to the same extent, coming in at $725/£639/AU$1,199. Being a slightly older phone, the price has also dropped in some stores, so you can potentially get it for less.
With a 5.8-inch edge-to-edge OLED screen, a glass back, IP68 certification, wireless charging and loads of power, the iPhone 8 is set to be more similar to the Samsung Galaxy S8 than Apple’s phones typically are to Samsung’s, but there’s still likely to be a lot separating them.
The iPhone 8 will probably have a dual-lens camera for one, along with more built-in storage, better facial scanning, a real focus on AR features and of course iOS rather than Android. It will also probably have a flat screen, while the S8’s is curved, no microSD card slot, which the S8 does have, and a higher price tag.
As always, your choice may well come down to whether you’re more into iOS or Android, but that aside, on paper – and based on rumors in the iPhone 8’s case – these are both seriously impressive phones.
We’ll be bringing you the final specs and features, along with hands on impressions of the iPhone 8, just as soon as it’s announced.
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